Finding ways not to make flying geese!

To paraphrase Thomas Edison I didn’t exactly fail this weekend, I just found out one way not to make flying geese for a Dutchman’s Puzzle block.

Dutchman's puzzle 1

I had looked up the block in one of my quilt books but although it said the finished blocks were 6″ square when cutting out the triangles they were far too big so I thought if I halved them that would work.

Turns out that means that when you join them all together you loose the points of your geese. Oh well, it still looks pretty and I can pretend to have invented a new block.

I have found another way of doing it which although looks a little weird at first appears to be working so started another block this afternoon.

With the left over triangles I made some pinwheel blocks, the smaller ones is a result of not matching the centre correctly so having to take it apart and recut it all, resulting in a mini version. It still looks good though and at least I have some points on these triangles 😉 I love the brighter colours in these ones.

Pinwheel block 1

Pinwheel block 2

It has been a very lovely weekend. Ellie came up to spend some time with us from Thursday so we went to the cinema to see the new Jurassic Park movie, (I love those movies and this one was very good).

We also did some gardening replacing all of my pots and hanging baskets with new flowers which I am hoping the sheep are not going to eat.On Saturday we managed to have our 8th BBQ of the year!

I spent two whole days in the craft room. As well as the blocks I have made myself a new shift for re-enactment, just have the hems and seam finishing to do in time for the Tatton event this coming weekend.Then Ellie and I go to the Lake District for a few days camping which will be fun, lots of National Trust houses to visit and hopefully some beautiful views.

Hope that you have all had a lovely weekend and have a nice week ahead.Thanks for visiting and take care.

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Christmas gift stitching

I am working on a couple of Christmas presents at the moment, both using Jenny of Elefantz stitching designs.

The first one is a design from the Stitchery Club Nov 2016, this is another version of the one I stitched a few weeks ago while in Spain which I made into a pouch for me and I loved it so much I wanted to stitch it again.

Elefantanz flower circle 1

I have adapted the design to be a full circle of flowers by copying a couple of motifs from other parts of the circle.I can’t find the design for sale at present on Jenny’s site.

I used a Liberty fabric for the hexagon and my favourite Silk Mill threads for the stitching along with some of my new Caron Waterlilies variegated thread from Sew and Sew.

The other thing I am going to buy if I ever win the Lottery is the entire 700 thread set that is available from the Silk Mill, can you imagine having all of the colours!

This will be a pouch with some contrast Liberty at the bottom and denim for the back similar to the previous one below.

Bird and hexagon pouch 1

The other Jenny design is from the May 2018 Stitchery Club and as soon as I saw this design I knew I would stitch it straight away. It is so unusual and I am looking forward to practising some new stitches while doing it.

ELEFANTZ+stitch+sampler+cover

Picture above from Jenny’s Craftsy page where you can buy this design. This will become a project wallet to store embroidery.

At Jenny’s suggestion I trace my embroidery onto the fabric using a brown Zig Millennium pen. I bought three a few years ago from an online art supplier and they are still going strong.I am using a cotton fabric with a white on white background as I tend to do for most of my embroidery.

Elefantz embroidery sampler 3

The stitching covers up all trace of the pen as it is permanent.

Elefantz embroidery sampler 1

What about you, have you started your Christmas crafting yet? I already have 3 ornaments completed with one nearly finished and another 5 of the same design to make.

I hope that you have a lovely weekend ahead, Ellie is coming for a short visit until Saturday lunchtime and I am planning to spend most the rest of it in the craft room, my last weekend here for a while so I will make the most of it. Take care and thanks for visiting.

I do like a good freebie!

I recently treated myself to a quilt magazine, I used to have subscriptions to three magazines but stopped as I had so many lovely ideas that I didn’t ever get time to make but bought this one because of the free gift of quilter’s graph paper.

Quilt mag

As you know I have been resizing blocks and thought this would help me. It is great as unlike ordinary graph paper it comes in one inch sizing with the option to use different scales. There was also a useful article on how to resize and add the all important seam allowances.

Quilt graph paper 1

I was just going to make some more churn dash blocks but there was an illustration of a Philadelphia block and I thought that looked pretty if quite fiddly in smaller scale. You do know how I love to make tiny things though so I worked out the measurements using my graph paper for a 5″ finished size block.

Quilt graph paper 2

Quilt graph paper 3

Philadelphia block 1

I completed it yesterday and am very pleased, most of the pieces match really well, not easy when some are only 1/2 ” across. This is on the pile of blocks to make into pouches and bags for gifts and Yarndale.

Philadelphia block 2

I am on with another couple of blocks today from one of my books. I have also just discovered this site with free Block of the Day cutting instructions so that  should keep me amused for a while!

I decided to have the complete weekend off work despite being away for the last two weekends as well. I have marked 142 assignments in the last 5 weeks and have 22 more to go but am feeling a little brain dead so thought a weekend in the craft room would be good for me. The weather is lovely today so we are making plans for our 6th BBQ of the year!

I have a quiet week ahead with just a few meetings and the marking to finish off so am looking forward to getting that done and then spending some serious time on my doctorate, after I come back from my holiday in Spain 🙂

I do love this time of year, the rhododendrons are in bloom and the sunshine makes everything look lovely. Hope that you are having nice weather where you are.

Take care, see you soon and thanks for visiting.

Creative people

I had a lovely time at Ashby, the weather was very kind as we only had thunder and lightening at night, not during showtimes and were able to pack all the tents away dry:-)

I spent quite a lot of the time sitting sewing while doing the occasional chat about headresses and we also did the fashion talk again.

Ashby 2018 Ellie and me sewing

This is Ellie showing off her new gloves, decorated with goldwork. I need to get a close up of these as they are fabulous.

Ashby 2018 Ellie and me

I was very pleased that Sadie was working on her new gauntlets and that Symon was making a beautiful tooled leather scabbard for his sword.

Ashby 2018 Sadie 1

I took some pictures as I want to use them in my doctoral research. All the people in my group are so clever. Symon is making another beautiful hand tooled scabbard.

Ashby Simon Leatherwork 1

Ashby Simon Leatherwork 2

Ashby Simon Leatherwork 3

I handed over the finished circlet to Kate, she was very pleased with it and it fits! I made it in a similar design to Ellie’s but a little simpler.It is made of black velvet over a stiffened hessian (buckram) band.

Kate's headress 2

Kate's headress 1

Kate's headress 3

Most of the fabric came from stock though not all mine but  between us we managed to sort it. Stitching through buckram makes your fingers sore but it looks lovely.The brass findings were from Etsy here.

A very lovely weekend in the company, as always, of very talented and fun people.Our next event is not for a few weeks now so am hopefully going to get some quality time in the sewing room over the next two weekends, I have been working on another Liberty quilt block so will hopefully get chance to finish that this weekend.

Hope you have a nice rest of the week and will catch up with you soon. Take care and thanks for visiting.

 

 

 

 

 

A bag in progress

I have finished the Liberty Churn Dash block with the Jenny of Elefantz stitching at the centre. It looks beautiful and now I just need to decide what sort of bag I am going to make it into. I think I want something more structured than the soft shoulder bag I made last year so will have to peruse the internet for ideas.

Churn dash and embroidery block 1

I am very pleased with the matching of the different elements on this block.

I want to use these lovely vintage lace bobbins as decoration on the top of the bag, I will probably just loop them round the handle.

Churn dash and embroidery block 6

I have also bought some lovely new Liberty fabric, this set is 5″ squares in two of my favourite designs, this is from ZuZus Crafts on Etsy.

Liberty fabric 1

This is Capel, I love the outline print on this design.

Liberty fabric 2

Liberty fabric 3

I think this one might be my favourite Liberty fabric ever, so ditsy and in my best colours. This is Phoebe.

Liberty fabric 4

I have finished stitching the headress for Kate so will get some pictures of that for you this weekend as we are doing a show at Ashby de la Zouche Castle. The weather is supposed to be very good so I am looking forward to another lovely event with my friends. This will be our first camping trip of the season so I am going to enjoy sitting round the campfire of an evening.

The frantic marking is still continuing so I have just got some very little works in progress for evenings, hemming a piece of linen to go with my new veil and a repeat of the last Jenny stitching that I did for a new pouch.

I have possibly got some time next weekend to get into the craft room so may have some more things to share with you then.

In the meantime have a lovely Bank Holiday weekend, thanks for visiting and see you soon.

Answering the call of the cow

On Sunday we were WWW1 Land Army girls for an event called Bonnets to Breeches at Clumber Park. This was a dramatisation of a short story about the WWW1 Land Girls who were at Clumber, written by one of the property volunteers and performed by Talegate Theatre.

One of the things that Ellie found while researching was this wonderful video where talking cows were used to appeal to women to join, so we did 😉

Here we are in our costumes, all sourced from charity shops.She even made herself this wonderful badge.

Clumber B2B 24

Clumber B2B 1

Clumber B2B 2

Clumber B2B 3

The production took place in the walled kitchen garden and was a walking performance with each scene taking place in a different part of the garden. It was performed five times during the day by the four actors, assisted by guides who were all Clumber Park volunteers and during the day about 130 people saw the production.

 

While the performances were taking place and in between them our role was to be in another part of the garden with some of the old tools to display them to the public. We had a lovely time talking to lots of people who remembered using the tools we had and to lots of children who had to guess what they were used for.Here is Ellie demonstrating the mattock.

Clumber B2B 4

Clumber B2B 5

I also got to see the performance and to hear a very moving talk on the history of the Land Girls in both world wars by Cherish Watton who runs the Women’s Land Army website.

The walled garden is beautiful, I have only been there before in winter and it looked stunning with great displays of my favourite alliums.

 

Clumber B2B 6

 

This was such a lovely day, I really enjoyed myself and would love to be able to do more volunteering there if I can in the future.Here are all of the cast and volunteers at the end of the day.

Clumber B2B cast

Clumber B2B 23

 

I am still working on the headress for Kate, some busy stitching in front of the TV, a nice relaxing thing to do after marking all day. I am just going to attach the final bits of braid and smaller pearls and then I can reveal all.

Hopefully we will have lovely weather this weekend so she can wear it and I can get some action shots for you. Hope that you have a lovely rest of the week and a nice Bank Holiday weekend if you are in the UK.

Take care and thanks for visiting.

 

 

600 years in a weekend

We have had a lovely time doing two events this weekend. Firstly it was a multi-period event at Thoresby Hall in Nottinghamshire. This beautiful Victorian house is now a hotel but we were able to go into the grounds.

I especially loved the gates and we had a picnic lunch in that gorgeous turret seating area looking out from the lawn,we do get to see some stunning places!

Thoresby 3

There were lots of different groups there from the Romans to World War 2 plus some American Civil War so we had great fun admiring all of the different costumes. I particularly loved this WWW1 tent with all the textiles and authentic magazines.

Ellie would really like to do WWW2 as well as medieval so was interested in talking to those groups. The funny thing was virtually everyone we talked to also did medieval as well.

I finished making a new linen veil the night before, great to stop my neck being burnt as it was very hot.

Thoresby Veil 1

Thoresby Veil 2

I took these shots of Ellie on stairs up to the formal gardens, I love the light in these.

Thoresby Ellie 1

Thoresby Ellie 2

Thoresby Ellie 3

Sunday we spent at Clumber Park – a little time travel 600 years into the future to 1918 for our WWW1 land girls stint rather then 1318 and the court of Edward the 2nd. I will post about that in a couple of days.

I am having a very quiet week this week in preparation for another weekend event coming up, at the lovely Ashby Castle, making the headress for Kate and doing lots of marking.

Hope you have a nice week planned, take care and thanks for visiting.